CAMBS: Honouring the fallen on Remembrance Day

HUNTINGDONSHIRE paused to remember fallen servicemen and women on Remembrance Sunday.

Services were held in towns and villages across the district, including Huntingdon, St Neots, St Ives and Ramsey, with many reporting higher-than-average turnouts.

The ceremonies followed similar events on Armistice Day on Friday, November 11.

For a gallery of pictures from services held across the district, follow the link to the right of this story.

In Huntingdon, an estimated 2,000 people lined the High Street and Market Hill for the act of remembrance and parade.

There was concern when macebearer Fred Carter fainted during the ceremony, but he was quickly treated and his deputy took over his duties.

Mayor Alan Mackender-Lawrence said: “The town was packed full of people, and there were so many wreaths. I think this year it has come home to a lot more people what Remembrance Day is all about.

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“It was great to see so many people turn out. There seems to be more awareness than ever of what our armed forces are doing around the world in trying to protect freedom.”

After the service at the memorial at Market Hill, which was attended by the Deputy Lord Lieutenant, Colonel Derek Bristow, the parade proceeded to St Benedict’s Court.

The parade group included all three cadets forces, all ages of the Scout and Brownie movements and the St John Ambulance youth.

Cllr Mackender Lawrence added: “There were many more young groups this year than ever before, and a huge number of people attended the Commemoration Hall after the event for refreshments.”

Community groups turned out in force in Ramsey, with people of all ages joining together to remember the sacrifices of the forces.

The 400-strong crowd included representatives of the Women’s Institute, the Scouts and Brownies, the army and air cadets and the KITE Youth Club.

The day began with a parade from the Abbey to the war memorial where there was a short service and the wreaths were laid.

That was followed by a service in the Thomas a Becket church, led by the Reverend Canon Richard Darmody.

The Mayor of Ramsey, Councillor Lisa Duffy, said the turnout had been “heart-warming”.

She added: “I’ve never seen the church so full. Everyone has really been touched this year, with the wars that are currently going on, but also because it is the Royal British Legion’s 90th anniversary, and there have been lots of events leading up to Remembrance Day.

“As mayor of Ramsey I was extremely proud to see so many people turn out for such an important occasion and to remember the fallen servicemen and women.”

Mrs Duffy also sent her condolences to Remembrance Day organiser Fred Butler, who is recovering from an aneurysm suffered several weeks ago, handing sole responsibility to Derek Savage.

Over 1,000 people turned out in St Ives on Sunday to honour the war dead at a service on Market Hill.

The Royal British Legion was joined by representatives from ex-servicemen’s organisations, the Merchant Navy, the fire service, St John Ambulance and a range of youth organisations including the Sea Scouts, the Marine Scouts, guides, brownies and cubs.

The parade began at 10.15am in Station Road before making its way to the town centre where the Mayor of St Ives, Councillor Martin Collier, gave a moving opening address.

The Reverend Roy Muttram, MA, led the service and wreaths were laid by the Mayor, Chief Executive of Huntingdonshire District Council Cllr Jason Ablewhite, representatives from RAF Brampton and Wyton, and the United States Airforce Base at Alconbury.

Alan Scott, secretary of St Ives Royal British Legion said: “This year was one of the best turnouts we’ve seen on Remembrance Sunday.

“The Royal British Legion would like to thank the St Ives police, led by Sergeant Becky Jones, St John Ambulance for providing first aid cover, Direct Communications and Radio Services for providing the public address system, St Ives Photo Print, for printing the hymn sheets and all the staff in the Town Hall and on the St Ives Town Council for their hard work organising road closures, sending out invitations and removing and replacing the railings around the war memorial.

“The service would not have happened without all these peoples’ contributions.”

Cllr Ablewhite added: “It was a very emotional service in St Ives.

“More and more people seem to want to be involved.

“As a country we should wear our poppies with pride – and remember those people who fought and died for our freedom were ordered into action.

“They had no choice.”